“Everything I was I carry with me, everything I will be lies waiting on the road ahead.” ― Ma Jian, Red Dust: A Path Through China
I don’t know how many years I have dreamed of traveling the world and bit by bit I made inroads. Then it felt like time was running out. By only seeing one or two countries a year, I knew I would never be able to see everything I wanted to see, to go everywhere I wanted to go, and experience everything I wanted to experience. So I began planning my ‘big’ trip.
I thought I would retire at 65 and venture forth but I couldn’t leave my wonderful dog, Betty White. At that point she was 10 and I assumed she would pass very soon. Great Pyrenees usually live 10-12 years. But she persisted and lived until she was past 14. I often quipped she lived two years past her expiration date. Meanwhile the trip was postponed. She was a great companion during Covid so I was grateful she stayed with me as long as she did.
While waiting, I collected information on the countries I hoped to visit and travel tips on Pinterest, I planned itineraries on Inspirirock, and subscribed to travel magazines. I started earning points on travel credit cards and time share points to make the trip more affordable. I researched the best time to visit each country and made lists of what I wanted to see. My dream was coalescing. And now I leave on June 18, 2023 and plan to be gone for a year.